CESI Trade Council ‘Education’: Valorisation of the teaching profession at the centre of the debate

Today, CESI’s Trade Council ‘Education, Training and Research’ (EDUC) held its constitutive meeting after CESI’s Congress in December last year. Following the elections of the trade council presidency and vice-presidency for the legislative term until 2020, the trade council, as CESI’s internal members’ committee for deliberation and positioning on EU education policies, discussed some of CESI’s most pressing European priorities that concern the teachers and educators that CESI represents.

In an unanimous vote, Claude Heiser of the Luxembourgish General Confederation of Public Services (CGFP) and Salvatore Piroscia of the Italian General Confederation of Independent Trade Union (CONF.S.A.L.) were re-elected as President and Vice-President respectively.

Claude Heiser unanimously re-elected President of the Trade Council 

Mario Gutiérrez of the Spanish Central Independent and Public Employees’ Trade Union (CSI-F) will join in as Vice-President and replace Horst-Günther Klitzing (German Civil Service Federation/dbb) who did not run again. CESI Secretary General Klaus Heeger said: “I am glad there will be again a very competent leadership in our Education Trade Council. Claude Heiser, Salvatore Piroscia and Mario Gutiérrez are all long-standing trade unionists that bring in a wealth of expertise from the education sector. They will be able build on CESI’s successful work on European education systems.”

On the agenda: Role of education in the integration of migrants, training support in digital skills and ethics for the teaching profession on the agenda

At the trade council meeting, some of CESI’s most pressing European priorities that concern the teachers and educators that CESI represents were discussed, many of them related to a much-needed further valorisation of the teaching profession.

In the presence of Kristina Cunningham from the European Commission’s DG for Education and Culture, the trade council members discussed the EU’s efforts to support schools, teachers and educators in the integration of migrants and refugees, which have been coming to Europe at elevated levels during the past years.

Education trade council Vice-president Salvatore Piroscia presented the ‘New Generation & Mobility of Skills’ (nGeMS) project carried out by CESI’s Italian member organisation Confsal, an initiative bringing young digital experts in touch with employers with the aim to help young people access the labour market and assist employers in managing and upgrading their digital skills. Together with Ana Maria Noguiera from the secretariat of the European Parliament’s Committee on Culture and Education, the trade council members debated how the EU can help CESI and its affiliates raise additional awareness about the project, expand it and find new partners.

Finally, Armindo Cancelinha of CESI’s Portuguese member ‘National Teachers Association’ (ANP) spoke on codes of ethics for the teaching profession. Given the importance of such codes, it was agreed to draft a memo to develop similar schemes in different Member States.